EBF in Joao Pessoa

Monday through Thursday we did EBF in Joao Pessoa. We started out with 94 kids on Monday and ended up with 89 kids on Thursday. The other two days, we had between 80 and 90 kids. All in all, things went really well. Sheridan and Joyce helped out with the crafts, Mike did some Bible classes in English, and I helped out with the activities. The theme of the EBF was The Victory Race. The church building was decorated in a racecar motif.

Several (about half) of the kids this year came from an area of town that Lori calls the “Square Ministry”. These children would be similar to our agape kids at Laurel. A good majority of these kids had never set foot inside a church before EBF. On Monday, a bus was supposed to bring them to the church and take them back home afterwards, but it nevershowed up. Instead, several of the church members with cars went and loaded up about 6 or 7 kids in each car. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, the bus (a Military Police bus) was able to come and bring the children.

Now to steal a story from Joey (Lori’s oldest brother)…
Lori asked Mathias what he learned today at EBF. He said that there was this man named John the Baptist and he ate stuff that he was not supposed to. God was not happy because he was eating stuff he was not supposed to. He would catch animals in the desert to eat, and it was not good for him. He would eat syrup. John was looking for Jesus, but he was not Jesus’ friend. Then he baptized Jesus and a birdie said that Jesus was the Filho de Deus (Son of God).

Now for my Mathias story….
Last night (Thursday), I was packing up my bag and Mathias asked me was I leaving. I was packing my bag and rolling up my Therm-a-rest. I said no, but I am packing my bag because we are going to be sleeping in Patos tomorrow. Patos is a city in the interior of Paraiba about 4 hours west of Joao Pessoa. This will be my first trip to the interior, so I am excited about it. Anyways, this morning Mathias welcomed me back. I told him I didn’t go anywhere yet. He said yeah, I had slept in Patos last night. He was wondering why I would sleep in Patos when it is so far away. We leave for Patos this afternoon and will be there until Monday morning. It is very doubtful that I will be checking any email while I am over there.

Unfortunately, I didn’t bring a laptop this year and there isn’t a card reader at any of the computers I get to use, so I won’t be able to upload pictures until I arrive back in the states. Hopefully this will be on the 12th, but there are lots of problems in Brazillian airports right now. The airtraffic controllers are on strike. They are operating on “Standard Procedure” and doing everything by the book. This really causes a lot of delays. Loooking at our itinerary, I’m thinking there may be a chance we are going to miss our flight in Chicago because of a delay in leaving Sao Paulo, but that’s getting too far ahead.

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